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Fjord Fuzz - Daniel Thornhill's Cutting Edge Futuristic Fuzz Pedals from the West Coast of Norway

Effects Pedal MakersFjord FuzzFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionModulated FuzzOctave FuzzOddball FuzzSilicon FuzzSuper-Fuzz Style+-
2019GPX4FjordFuzzMain700V5.jpg

As with many pedal builders, the roots of Daniel’s Fjord Fuzz are firmly embedded in a particular music scene. In this instance Bergen on Norway’s West Coast - one of the 4 main corners of Norway’s creative arts - alongside Oslo, Stavanger and Tromsø, and famously home to a number of internationally celebrated artists including Annie, Erlend Øye / King’s of Convenience (sic) / Whitest Boy Alive, Datarock, Kygo, and Ralph Myerz / and the Jack Herren Band. ...

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4 Fantastic Germanium and Silicon Switching Fuzz Pedals

Big Muff Style FuzzDanDrive PedalFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzOctave FuzzOddball FuzzPaul Trombetta DesignSilicon FuzzSpaceman EffectsTone Bender Style FuzzWren and Cuff+-
2019GPX4FantasticSiliGermFuzzes700-min.jpg

This article is somewhat in response to the fairly recent arrival of my long quested for Spaceman Gemini IV (originally chasing the III), and the imminent arrival of my DanDrive Austin Pride Fuzz. In fact when I was working on my last but one article on Tone Benders I was in two minds as to whether to include Paul Trombetta’s Bone Machine GTX - as I’m not 100% clear on what its circuit provenance is and exactly which fuzz family it is supposed to belong to - in the end I determined ...

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A Brief Hobbyist Primer on Key Fuzz Transistor Types and Chronology

Big Muff Style FuzzFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGuitar Gear ResourcesMaestro Style FuzzModulated FuzzOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzRat Style FuzzSilicon FuzzSuper-Fuzz StyleTone Bender Style FuzzTransistors+-
2019GPXTransistorPrimer700.jpg

I started down my Fuzz ToneQuest at the beginning of 2018 - where I already had a few fuzzes, but determined that over the course of the year I would acquire around 30 of the very best fuzzes available across the different fuzz families. My aim was to get the bulk of my research done in 2018 so I could move on to investigating other pedal genres - like say Glitch/Granular Synthesis/Micro Looping.

 

As it happens though - I got to twice as many fuzzes as intended in 2018, and have ...

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Favourite Pedals released in and around Summer NAMM 2019

Alexander PedalsBig Ear PedalsBoostBoost and OverdriveDistortionDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveDunlop EffectsDwarfcraftFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzGamechanger AudioGreer AmpsGuitar Synth and SequencerKorora AudioMad Professor EffectsMarshall Style DistortionModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveMythos PedalsOctave FuzzOctaverOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOverdrivePitchPitch-ShiftingRat Style FuzzRing ModulationSilicon FuzzSinvertekSource AudioThird Man RecordsTremoloTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeWampler+-
2019GPXBestSummerNAMMPedals700-min.jpg

I have covered off a number of my favourite Summer NAMM pedals already - including the Boss 200 range, RC-10R and SY-1, the Fulltone OCD Ge, the REVV G2, the Spaceman Effects Gemini IV, and Walrus Audio Kangra for instance. And there’s a couple more surprise ones I will be posting as dedicated features very soon - so stay alert for those! In the wake of one of the best ever Winter NAMM’s it was clear that the Summer NAMM could never match that degree of innovation - in fact most of ...

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Best of Australian and New Zealander Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

Ambient EffectsAnalog DelayAnarchy AudioBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBondi EffectsBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoCompressorCrowther AudioDelayDelay WorkstationDigital DelayDigital ReverbDistortionDouble TrackingDriveDual-DriveEchoverbEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahExpressionFlux EffectsFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzKlone and Transparent OverdriveLastgasp Art LaboratoriesLightning Wave EffectsLo-Fi DelayLoop-SwitcherMarshall Style DistortionMC SystemsMetal DistortionMI EffectsMidnight AmplificationModulationMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdrivePepers' PedalsPhaserPitchPoly EffectsRed Witch EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationSelah EffectsShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSpacey ReverbSplitter and Frequency SplitterTape DelayTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVolumeWah and Fixed Wah+-
2019GPXAustraliaNewZealandPedals700-min.jpg

Australia and New Zealand together have a fair few brands of international repute, and I for one certainly have a number of pedals of Australian origin in my collection. Foremost amongst those is Michael Ibrahim’s eponymous MI Audio / MI Effects - from which range past and present - I have 7 to date - with a couple more on the ’nice-to-have’ wishlist. Of the ones I have 2 are permanent features in my pedal-chain - the Super Crunch Box V2 (my Brown Sound pedal of choice) and ...

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Rough and Ready Reworked Classics - the Danelectro Vintage The Breakdown Boost/Overdrive/PreAmp and Octave Up The Eisenhower Fuzz

BoostBoost and OverdriveDanelectroEffects Pedal MakersFuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionOctave FuzzOverdrive+-
22019GPXDanelectoVintageDuo700-min.jpg

OK so let’s set the record straight right away - these are not vintage pedals - but rather vintage circuit replicas housed in modern compact enclosures which have in turn been deliberately aged and relicked! So these are really mixed media concoctions of sorts but very successful executions all round actually.

 

The Breakdown is based on the much larger 1968 wah/rocker style Univox UD50 Uni-Drive pedal which had two knobs - Pedal Range and Input Level to go with the variable gain ...

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Best of Central and South American Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

Beetronics FXBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBrown Sound DistortionChorus and VibratoCompressorCopilot FXDarkglass ElectronicsDedalo FXDeep Trip FXDistortionDriveDSM NoisemakerDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEffects Pedal MakersEnvelope Filter and Auto WahFire Custom ShopFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGated and Velcro FuzzGermanium FuzzGlitchGuitar Synth and SequencerKlone and Transparent OverdriveLoop-SwitcherMaestro Style FuzzMarshall Style DistortionMetal DistortionModulated FuzzModulationMonstro EffectsMulti-DriveOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOscillating FuzzOverdriveParadox EffectsPedalPalFXPhaserRat Style FuzzRetrohead FXSabbadius Custom EffectsSilicon FuzzSplitter and Frequency SplitterStomp Audio LabsSuper-Fuzz StyleTone Bender Style FuzzTremoloTube OverdriveTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeVox Style Distortion+-
2019GPXBestCentralSouthAmericanBuilders700-min.jpg

This is the 11th in the Pedal Builders Country Series as such, although I’ve had to cast the net slightly wider as I currently don’t consider there to be enough top-tier / International-level builders in a single country here to satisfy the usual criteria. Brazil and Argentina come fairly close - with Brazil having significantly the most concentrated volume of builders of any Country in that part of the world. Generally Brazil, Argentina and Chile are particularly well represented. ...

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Early Summer Pedal-Chain State of the Union - the Final Formation?

12 Degrees of SaturationAmbient EffectsAnasoundsBearfoot FXBig Muff Style FuzzBitcrushing and Lo-FiBlues Driver Style OverdriveBoostBoost and OverdriveBossBrown Sound DistortionBufferBuild Your Own CloneBYOCChase Bliss AudioChorus and VibratoCompressorDelayDelay WorkstationDemon PedalsDigital DelayDigital ReverbDigiTechDistortionDouble TrackingDr ScientistDriveDual-DriveDumble Style OverdriveEchoverbEmpress EffectsEnvelope Filter and Auto WahEQEventideFeaturedFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzGlitchGranular DelayGuitar AccessoriesGuitar Synth and SequencerHarmonizerJackson AudioJHS PedalsKeyztoneKlone and Transparent OverdriveLo-Fi DelayLooperMarshall Style DistortionMenatoneMeris EffectsMetal DistortionMI EffectsModulated FuzzModulationModulation WorkstationMulti-DriveMu-TronNoise GateOCD Style OverdriveOctave FuzzOctaverOddball ModulationOpAmp FuzzOverdrivePhaserPitchPitch-ShiftingPlate ReverbRack Style ReverbRat Style FuzzRed Panda EffectsReverbReverb WorkstationREVV AmplificationRotary SpeakerShimmer ReverbSilicon FuzzSlicer and StutterSource AudioSpaceman EffectsSpacey ReverbSpring ReverbStrymonTape DelayTC ElectronicToneQuestTremoloTrue North PedalsTubescreamer Style OverdriveUni-Vibe and VibeUtilityVox Style DistortionWah and Fixed WahWampler+-
2019GPXSKSignalChainMKV700-min.jpg

This is one of those moments that I feel that my celebrated Pedal-Chain has reached another milestone of ’peak performance’. There are a number of new releases here - and probably all the big ones I was expecting this year - bar the Chase Bliss Audio / Benson Amps Automatone MKII PreAmp - which is due in the Autumn now - and still pending final pricing, but will probably take up the top spot on Slot #14 eventually. Also - my long-awaited Beetronics Swarm Harmonizing PLL Style Fuzz ...

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Beetronics FX Swarm Harmonizer Fuzz now available for pre-order, starts shipping end of May

Beetronics FXFuzzModulated FuzzOctave FuzzOddball FuzzOscillating Fuzz+-
2019GPXBeetronicsSwarmPreorders700-min.jpg

This was one of the 3 big hits of the recent Winter NAMM show alongside the Chase Bliss Audio / Benson Amps Automatone PreAmp MKII and Strymon Volante Magnetic Echo Machine - at least in my opinion. And it’s one of my few key remaining acquisitions for this year.

 

We were never quite sure when this would be released, but the demo versions at NAMM looked pretty polished so I presumed a fairly imminent release and May therefore absolutely seems about right. The earlier versions were...

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Best of Polish Guitar Pedals and Pedal Builders

AmpsAnalogWise PedalsBig Muff Style FuzzBoostBoost and OverdriveChorus and VibratoDelayDigital ReverbDistortionDriveEffects Pedal MakersExar ElectronicsFlangerFuzzFuzz Face Style FuzzFuzz-Drive and FuzzstortionGermanium FuzzGigging AmpG-Lab Guitar LaboratoryGlitchGranular DelayHexe Guitar ElectronicsHome-Play AmpLongAmpMarshall Style DistortionModulationOccvlt PedalsOctave FuzzOverdrivePower SuppliesReverbSilicon FuzzSitek Guitar ElectronicsSuper-Fuzz StyleTaurus AmplificationTube AmpUtilityYankee Power+-
2019GPXBestPolishBuilders700V2-min.jpg

Poland was both trickier and yet eventually easier to rationalise than originally perceived. I have scanned through many a country now, and Poland seems to be the last of those with sufficient numbers of high calibre pedal builders to warrant a dedicated feature*. As noted before - these sorts of article take quite a lot of work to complete - and so this is the last of these I will be doing for a while.

 

* Note that USA and Japan are the leading pedal builders of the world still and too...

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